April 20, 2021

Business

U.S. Readies Small-Business Grants as P.P.P. Nears End

The federal government is preparing to open two new industry-specific small-business relief programs, one of them months in the works, as its signature pandemic aid effort, the Paycheck Protection Program, nears its end.

The Small Business Administration said it hopes to start taking applications by the end of this week for a $16 billion grant fund for live-event businesses like theaters and music clubs. The program, the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant, was supposed to begin nearly two weeks ago, but its application system malfunctioned and collapsed, stymieing thousands of desperate businesses that have been waiting months for the promised

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In a year largely defined by shutdowns, this Madison business grew… and continues to boom

New Yelp data shows nearly 500,000 new businesses opened during the past year

MIDDLETON, Wis.– While there’s no underscoring the impact the pandemic has had on local small business owners, new data from Yelp provides a welcome sign of hope: Nearly half a million businesses (487,577 in total) opened during the past year. That’s down just 14% compared with the period one year earlier. More than 15% of the new establishments were restaurant and food businesses.

While many Madison-based businesses closed

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Pandemic destroyed fewer U.S. businesses than feared, Fed study shows

The Federal Reserve building is set against a blue sky in Washington, U.S., May 1, 2020. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo

Fewer than 200,000 businesses in the United States may have failed during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lighter toll than initially feared and one that may have had relatively little impact on unemployment, according to Federal Reserve research.

The figure contrasts with the early forecasts that the pandemic would leave America’s”Main Street” desolate as well as with polls that continue to show large percentages of U.S. small business owners are worried about their survival.

Perhaps 600,000 businesses, most

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These technologies could hold back business travel indefinitely

It’s a sunny, breezy morning in Eugene, Ore., a place best known for access to the great outdoors, a history of environmental activism and being the birthplace of Nike. I’m standing outside a nondescript, one-story industrial space, speaking with Mark Frohnmayer, chief executive of Arcimoto, maker of a three-wheeled electric vehicle it calls a “fun utility vehicle.”

Only I’m not in Oregon. I’m still stuck at home, on the opposite coast, relying — like many of us — on an ever-growing array of tools that allow me to do my job remotely. In this

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Unemployment Is High. Why Are Businesses Struggling to Hire?

By contrast, “right now what seems to be happening is that job creation is outpacing the search effort that workers are putting forth,” said Professor Marinescu, an economist at the University of Pennsylvania. “Compared to how people reacted last spring, it’s not that long ago, but the situation has changed a bit.”

That is to say, a similar decline in workers’ desire to pursue jobs matters more when there are plenty of jobs to go around, which is increasingly the case as the economy reopens.

In other research on the expanded jobless benefits, Peter Ganong of the University of Chicago

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Covid-19’s Toll on U.S. Business? 200,000 Extra Closures in Pandemic’s First Year

The economic toll from the Covid-19 pandemic has been tough to measure, but new estimates from the Federal Reserve suggest it wasn’t as bad as feared for smaller businesses.

The pandemic resulted in the permanent closure of roughly 200,000 U.S. establishments above historical levels during the first year of the viral outbreak, according to a study released Thursday by economists at the Fed. In recent years, about 600,000 establishments have permanently closed per year, or about 8.5%, according to the study.

Individual companies account for about two-thirds—or roughly 130,000—of the extra closures if  historical patterns hold, according to the Fed

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